Letter to the Editor: Catholic church's view of homosexuality outdated, rejected by most Americans

^ Posted Nov. 17

Editor:

The recent election results showed not only a victory for Obama and the progressive agenda, but demonstrated a significant step forward in the struggle for equal rights for women, Latinos and the gay community. Voters in Maine, Maryland and Washington voted to legalize gay marriage - something no state has done before - and in Minnesota voters rejected a proposed ban. This is all the remarkable when one considers the fierce opposition from the religious conservatives lead by American Catholic bishops.

In a clearly politically motivated document, the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Newark, N.J., the Rev. John J. Meyers urges "faithful Catholics" and other "men and women of good will" to vote against any candidate for public office who supports same-sex marriage. He goes on to say that all Catholics who support such a candidate should consider themselves excommunicated and should therefore not partake in the Eucharist at Catholic altars.

This starkly demonstrates the archbishop's definition of homosexuality as "deviant, unnatural and even evil" is badly outdated and almost universally rejected by a majority of Americans, including Catholics. No reputable scientist today supports the idea that anyone chooses his or her sexual orientation. Homosexuality cannot be cured because it is not a disease, and those organizations that claim to be able to are fraudulent.

The archbishop's "pastoral teaching" is profoundly wrong and will be ridiculed by people of reason. It will be soundly rejected and ignored by those he calls the "faithful" just as they largely ignore the church's teaching on birth control and death with dignity. The pope and the archbishop will some day discover that "truth" is not the truth and cannot be forced on the church laity, who will soundly dismiss it. Then, in the words of former Episcopalian Bishop John Shelby Spong, "will their minds be changed and an apology will be appropriate for the pain their prejudice and ignorance has caused for millions, including many who are priests and bishops of their own church."

Gene Rigelon, Front Royal





48 Comments



Great letter as always, Mr. Rigelon! We have too many hypocrites "running the show" in politics and yes, the church.

The great FAMILY VALUES party is a case in point and more recent (see below).
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Documents obtained by the Chattanooga Times Free Press finds that Tennessee physician and Rep. Scott DesJarlais (R-TN) supported his ex-wife's decision to get two abortions before their marriage.

The Tennessee lawmaker has described himself as "a consistent supporter of pro-life values."

The couple's 2001 trial transcript "also confirms DesJarlais had sexual relationships with at least two patients, three coworkers and a drug representative... During one affair with a female patient, DesJarlais prescribed her drugs, gave her an $875 watch and bought her a plane ticket to Las Vegas, records show."
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When we stop THINKING for ourselves and blindly follow the teaches of those who assume that authority - look out, be it religion or politics: It's all about power and control.

Now let the debate begin. . .

A person who professes to be an intelligent human being certainly has the ability to decide for himself whether he accepts our existance as pure fate through evolution or the devine work of creation by a higher power recognized as God. Those who seek to change the rules mock God. God will not be mocked. He will pour down his wrath upon the peoples and nations that say there is no God. People who do not believe in God say 'Oh God', or God Da__ this or that or mindlessly spew profanity, often directed at God. Yet still they claim there is no God. Why do they call on his name even in anger if the do not believe there is a God. A creator to whom we must all eventually answer.
Obviously you can read so I suggest you read the Bible. Not just part. Not selected scripture but the whole book. God is not dead. He is giving mankind time to turn from their wickedness before he destroys the world as he destroyed Sodom and Gomorah.
The living hell the unbeliever will face here on earth is nothing to what eternity has in store for he who will not turn away from his wicked ways.
There is a place for true believers; those livers and doers of the word of God. There is also a place for those who reject God and his mercy by living for the devil. The choice is yours.

Can you show ONE WORD in that tome that god wrote?

Thanks

I have been thinking about the roots of this matter for many years. The basic question comes down to "What is real?" That leads to a new question - "Are we virtual or are we tangible?"

The somewhat confusing answer is that we are both, with completely different exit destinations for each part of our being. The part that lives on forever is nothing like what we have been taught to believe. Not only that, but it continues growing exponentially by cohesive bonding with others.

My conclusions are here:

http://www.realityisfree.com/

pointman, In reading you post, I started to wonder...having read the Bible as you have, is there one very strong sentence you would quote as a guidance for man's treatment to another?

Job 4:8 As I have observed, those who plow evil and those who sow trouble reap it.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Job 13:9 Would it turn out well if he examined you? Could you deceive him as you might deceive men?

Gal 6:7 Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap.

Hosea talks of judgment against the nation that “plays the harlot” before God: “Though they bring up their children, yet I will bereave them to the last man. Yes, woe to them when I depart from them!” (Hosea 9:12)

We have mocked God.

God will not be mocked.

“Millions of Americans looked evil in the eye and adopted it,” wrote Liberty Counsel’s Mat Staver the day after the election. “Abortion, same-sex marriage and immorality carried the day.”

Indeed, evil carried the day. America has willfully chosen a Democratic platform – a Romans 1 platform – upon which to stand. We have chosen a party that thrice denied God, and then returned his name in vain – amid deafening boos – to its platform.

God will not be mocked.

America has chosen a party that demands every taxpayer be complicit in the federally funded slaughter of the pre-born. We have exalted a party that seeks to – and in many was ways has already done so – enshrine into law the celebration of sexual deviancy and mock marriage.

The haughty peoples of four states have said to God, “Marriage is as we say it is, not as you have ordered it.” And so, though removed from truth, as east is from west, they have, at the ballot box, affirmed moral disorder.

Try telling God, who breathed life into every living thing, that it was your right to make the choices you made.

Parts of this response are credited to Matt Barber.

*I* believe there should be two separate marriage types. One by the church(s) and one by the courts/justices etc. With both being applicable and accepted under the law. Problem solved and I myself even would have the latter.

My own "evolution" on the issue came simply because my husband and I having both been previously married weren't in any grand rush to the altar again. We would have remained happily unmarried with the exception of filing taxes, getting insurance, the event of emergency, illness or death to name a few primary reasons.

It was frustrating that what had to get a piece of paper to make legal what we already knew. Thus my evolution. I don't care what someone is doing in their home, their bedroom. It becomes a civil rights issue when you say some people can receive these benefits and some others can't.

Ver-gin-ya probably won't hop on board anytime soon, but its coming eventually.

As for the one who is weak in faith, welcome him, but not to quarrel over opinions. (Romans 14.1)

Live in harmony with one another. Do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly. Never be wise in your own sight. Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all. If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all. Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.” (Romans 12:16-19)

“Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.”


Quick question:

God created all of us and loves us ALL. Why would he put on earth those who are homosexual and those who are not, when he 'detest' homosexuality?

One answer: God gave us all choices to make with our lives.

Time to get real folks, God is running out of patience with these endless feel good discussions.

Quick question "humble":

Why would a person "choose" to be homosexual and be persecuted by fellow humans? Perhaps the "homosexual" is a test for the good Christian people of the world and if that's the case, most are failing miserably.

I worked with three homosexuals for approximately 15 years or longer before I retired, one man and two women. All three told me they felt they were different when they were young, upon reaching sexuality maturity they tried dating members of the opposite sex into their mid to late 20's and felt absolutely no inclination to form a relationship other than "friends". The two women have formed lasting bonds with other women and one couple has a child via artificial insemination. I recently happened to meet the couple with the child and found my former coworker very happy with her family, this was a woman that had numerous personal problems brought on by her own family, particularity a younger brother persecuting her about her sexuality. I inquired about the other woman since the two had been friends and was told she was doing quite well in her own relationship. The gentleman mentioned I see from time to time and he is not in a relationship but sees another gentleman on a regular basis and they are more or less a couple and he too seems happier than he'd been in the past.

I have no problem calling them friends and hopefully they feel the same about me, I'm happy for them. I used to fear homosexuals until I sat down with an open mind and listened to what they wanted out of life. Are they wrong, maybe in your eyes but not mine. They just want what we all want, to be happy, to be loved by another and to be able to care for another. They are good people and I seriously doubt God condemns them.

I do my best to live by the 11th commandent and feel I've been blessed in more ways than one because I do so. The Bible is a "guide" for life but I don't take it literally.

Mock god?

I will and do mock all forms of myths posed as "absolute truth" and anyone who says "the bible is the word of God" though "god" never wrote a single word.

by the time you reach adulthood, you should understand the difference between reality and fables.


BUT


When that is what you are "indoctrinated" (bainwashed) to believe from birth, your free will has been stolen.

Jesus isn't coming back and that imaginary God isn't going to save you. MYOB and keep your religious "feelings" OUT of the rest of our homes and lives.

pointman, the fact is, it isn't your church that is in charge of marrying people.

that would be the state. your sect has no involvement whatsoever.

"We the people" not your petty feelings because of what some book told you.

Could a sandwich board be in your future by chance?

You can choose to live your life as you see fit. Some choose to enjoy their life. Some choose to live their lives in fear of their supposed creator. They do not enjoy their life, because they're too afraid of what might happen if their "Creator" disapproves. They miss out on the very reasons for living because they're too afraid to live.

After reading all the above words, I note that there is a key missing--FREEDOM OF CHOICE. If one does not wish to follow the doctrine of the Catholic Church simply attend Unity or one of the more "progressive" churches. In my humble opinion, the words of the bible do not become outdated according to modern lifestyles, just to accommodate ones mood of the moment--but that is my opinion only. However, the "progressives" of our society are seeking slowly, inch by inch to take away the freedems that make America great, i.e. we must accept whatever they say or we are rascists, homophobes or whatever. In my opinion, a true progressive is one who lives his own life and allows others to live theirs in peace.

pointman posted: Job 4:8 As I have observed, those who plow evil and those who sow trouble reap it.

“Millions of Americans looked evil in the eye and adopted it,” wrote Liberty Counsel’s Mat Staver the day after the election. “Abortion, same-sex marriage and immorality carried the day.”

John Lofton of The American View Christian radio show accused Liberty University of not being "a truly Christian college" when Jerry Falwell gave permission for the debate team to debate in favor of abortion when required. If those in charge truly believe in what they preach, how can they justify allowing these young minds to argue FOR it?

“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’ (Matthew 7:21-23)

SadieB: good post on here. I've been holding back posting on here. I figure if your catholic your catholic, nothing can change that. We all have different beliefs.
Catholicism has been around for a long time. If you are worried about what the structure of their church and beliefs..i'm not sure what to say.
Their are plenty of other churches.

shendoah1...

You wrote "plenty of other churches".

Why bother? Gotta have that religious "fix" one way or another?

http://www.realityisfree.com/whereisgod.html

Do not want to stand on my soapbox but have to respond to John. One of God's gifts to us is freedom of choice--we can either believe in him or reject him. Yes I "gotta have that religious 'fix' every minute, every second of the day." How can one not believe in a greater power when you look at the beauty of nature, the smile on a baby's face. This is nothing man can create. It is not my wish to convert anyone to my way of thinking however, I can tell you from personal testimony that God has brought me through some difficult times and it is my faith in him that is my spiritual food and sustenace. Yes, there are plenty of paths to God and there is no path--it is our individual choice and no man or political power can take that away from us.

SadieB...

Surely, then, you should have absolutely NO difficulty in providing us with a location, Location, LOCATION...

http://www.realityisfree.com/whereisgod.html

That Golden Rule (we learned as children) will do it: "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you".

Apply that rule to all living creatures, including the animals, and you will be better for it. You don't need a religion to act accordingly.

When someone insists that God did not write a word of the Bible they choose to deny that God chose men to write his inspired word. Doubt God's existence and so you ask location, Location, LOCATION? Do you see the air you breathe?
The Golden Rule is not some wide-eyed idea someone had to encourage people to treat one another as they themselves would want to be treated, they are the words of Jesus in Luke 6:31 and Matthew 7:12.
Professing my beliefs does not impose anything on anyone that their rejection of God does not impose upon me. The Northern Virginia Daily has an open forum for responses to articles and letters to the editor. We all have opinions. Some are based on faith, the absence of faith, political views or quite simply, our personal opinion on a given issue. Some comments are tactful and considerate. Some are targeted at previoius comments and those who made them. I am certainly guilty of commenting based on my personal beliefs. My heart aches for lost souls.
I survived.
Do you know where the handle 'pointman' comes from? It was enough to make a believer out of me.

Sadie8, As you posted, "beauty of nature and a baby's smile"--yes. Many years ago as a divorced mother of two young children, my commute to work was 34 miles one way. When the roads were bad, I would say a little prayer right before starting my car and never gave the drive a second thought after that. When I was asked about an overseas assignment, I prayed for help in that decision as I would be taking two teenage children with me. Everything worked out very well. When I met the man now my husband, I just prayed "thy will be done." Recently, I had a medical scare and again "thy will be done" and I have had excellent treatment. Although baptised, I no longer attend church, nor am I impressed with organized religion, especially Osteen*, Falwell and the like.

In almost all of my overseas posting, I would invite people from the area and ex-pat offices to my residence for dinner and to help me trim my Christmas tree. The people were from many, many different countries and, of course, different religions. Those were great evenings, and my trees were very unique. One place I even had just a stick (no leaves) tree and that even looked great once decorated. The experience of the different cultures and religions were very special; sitting around in a group sharing differences is something I'm sure all will remember.

For men to believe that the abortion (or gay) issue are the determining factors for choosing the president of this country really demonstrates just how out of touch they are. Roe v Wade has been the law since 1973. I personally have no problem with humans doing what they personally wish to do as long as they are not imposing their will on me or mine, and as long as their actions aren't putting another person in harms way. If these religious types exerted as much time, attention, and energy to the starving babies in Africa as they do the gay issue, wonder how many children could be saved? But that might involve leaving their comfort zone.

* http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d_1yc_vUMC8

Men chose, not god.


Beware the false prophets eh pointman?


What's with the captcha on NVD now?

wondering,

Speaking of indoctrination, I wrote about how it is done here:

http://www.realityisfree.com/memes.html

...and what the final results are here:

http://www.realityisfree.com/zombies.html

My own perception - from experience - has been that most working males would prefer to have a manager who shares traditional male values. But, in that same office environment, the working females tended to be more tolerant because the nominally male homosexual boss would not "hit" on them. In my opinion any religious edict on the matter would be outside the bounds of true basic religious belief. It would be confined to a particular functional dogma that is ALWAYS created by humans.

There is no justification for any sort of persecution, because that would imply that there is yet another subset of the human ANIMAL species.

My own personal rules when it gets to the political and economic level are included here:

http://www.realityisfree.com/mygoals.html

pointman,

You wrote: "Do you see the air you breathe?"

Your non-answer seems to imply that God is located on planet earth and consists of air. Now some unkind folks would have fun with that obsfucation, perhaps by asking about the temperature of the air.

In any case, I don't quite understand how air, whether hot or cold, could possibly create biological life.

With that perception of your understanding of the matter, I still refer you to the best reference possible, the stars:

http://www.realityisfree.com/whereisgod.html



The ascent of man has always been impeded by the needs of religion to suppress knowledge exposing the myths of religion. Stopping homosexuality that is prevalent throughout the animal kingdom, and especially the human animal, is religion's latest crusade to dominate your thinking.

Knowledge is, and will continue to be, the demise of religious influence on the everyday man. Religion is merely magic wrapped in a red bow that preys on and promotes ignorance of the world around us. Religion can not see the fine grained structure that is obscured by the blindness of faith. What other artifact of humanity from the Bronze age do we hold in high regard today? Knowledge is the power that dooms religion to the dust bin of history.

It is tough to believe a compassionate and divine god, if such a concept actually existed, would communicate with ordinary people only through the medium of shamen, magicians, sooth-sayers, Popes, television evangelists, rabbis, the Pat Robertson / Billy Graham fakers, ordained priests of organized religions, or images magically appearing on burnt toast, each with its own perpetuation of the tyranny that is religion.

Why would not an all-powerful god eliminate these unnecessary and greed-driven middlemen and simply speak directly to every individual, letting all believers throughout the world simultaneously hear that voice in their heads, eliminating wars between feuding Arab and Jewish and Christian states, and unifying all flavors of religion under one all-encompassing deity?

These are the simple questions that cause the faithful to honestly question the validity of their faith or continue to delude themselves consuming the unsatisfying slop, 'my god works in strange ways'. Strange, indeed, is the tyrannical truth and a tyrannical lie spoken at the same time.

Religion's weaknesses always point to the greater the absurdity, the stronger the belief in it. Walking on water, making the sun stand still, virgin birth, immaculate conception, the stars falling to the ground, people living to the ripe old age of 900+ years, all these ancient mysteries boggled the ancient uneducated mind.

Faith is at its greatest when its teachings are least amenable to reason, especially when overshadowed by new scientific discoveries that explain away the magic of religion. Benjamin Franklin's invention of the lightening rod dealt a near fatal blow to the belief lightening was the wrath of god punishing the wicked. Of course when a non-wicked person was struck dead, the refrain was the newly dead was being punished for misdeeds committed behind closed doors away from public scrutiny, but the all knowing god wasn't fooled, he could see what was going on. Imagine the slack jaws resulting when Franklin goes on to elaborate the common household equipment -- brass wire, a knitting needle, a few small staples -- that is required to accomplish this "miracle" protecting everybody from lightening. All of a sudden, gods power was reduced to being under the control of mankind.

So why does the magic of religion fall apart when we discuss the homosexual priests who raped children? Were these priests somehow immune to catching a lightening bolt?

For the topic of this Letter-To-The-Editor, it was a given the religious faithful would self-anoint themselves as victims of a government gone wild, a persecution unjustly deserved. But these are the trappings of devout religious people, the world has done them wrong but faith will make it whole again. And this is the falsehood of every religion -- that their god is on their side.

During the Civil War between the States, the motto of the Confederacy was Deo Vindice, or "God on Our Side." Atlanta was burned to ashes by people who thought that the same god took the other view. Two peoples, same god, different results. No wonder religion makes people crazy.

Christian conservatives are playing an ancient game using religion to separate the world into “us” and “them.” All religion has poisoned and hampered the growth of civilization, becoming more dangerous when the “us and them” worldview grows rigid — when the “we” claim moral (or theological) superiority over others, keeping faith and family the top priority while attempting to impose religious beliefs on non-believers. Pray all you want, as often as you need, wherever the need; the problems come when you try forcing me against my will to bend a knee, bow down, or submit to magic.

Religion poisons everything.


Gal 6:7 Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap.

so pointman, according to you and your quotes/passages.... all those who have spewed hatred towards women and the gay community are in for some major reaping!

John, I wish I had written the date on the back of a piece I cut out of a paper which has been my travel companion for as long as I can remember and a permanent fixture on my refrigerator door now. These are the guidelines I try to meet; and, I'm sure, some who read here will recognize them.

1. Tell the Truth.
2. Do your best, no matter how trivial the task.
3. Choose the difficult right over the easy wrong.
4. Look out for the group before you look out for yourself.
5. Don't whine or make excuses.
6. Judge others by their actions not their race.

However, seeing the world today, another quote comes to mind:

"Jesus wept." ~ John 11:35

Quoting the word of God is not hatred.
Judging people, condemning people is as sinful, as any other sin.
Taking scripture out of context doesn't solve anything. It is only when scripture is looked at out of context that people feel they have 'the' answer.
The air you breathe refers to something we depend upon for life that we cannot see. Like God!
He loves us and he will forgive our sins if we ask his forgiveness and truly repent. Some people think this life is all there is. How sad! That would make our existence totally insignificant even when viewed as our place in our family history.
Religion means nothing. A personal relationship with God means everything. That means living according to his word. God and sin do not co-exist.

"Pointman",

I would like to propose a few conversation starters for your thoughtful consideration:

Among your many convictions, do you believe in an America where the separation of church and state is absolute?

If it were to be shown conclusively that Moses and Jesus and Mohammed were mythical figures, and their "books" man-made and not god-made, would all our moral dilemmas not be exactly what they are now? Or would you consider this news a personal tragedy?

Why did heaven leave the human race to suffer and die alone for the first one hundred thousand years of its existence, and only decide to intervene in the last few thousand years, and then only in illiterate and barbaric regions of the Middle East? Why omit Orientals? Why omit the New World Americas?

Does discussion of personal religious faith belong in the public square?

Do you believe the function of state is incomplete without the guidance of religion?

Is it possible that any god kills family members in order to reunite them with loved ones later on?

Do you think secularism can provide moral authority (as religion does for its adherents)?

Can you name an ethical statement or action, made or performed by a person of faith, that could not have been made or performed by a nonbeliever?

Do you agree that religion causes sexual repression and ignorance that is harmful to children?

Do you think religion's cultural contributions have outweighed the tribal conflicts it has provoked?

Do you believe there is a biological or psychological basis for religious faith?

A spurious but still popular story goes that on his deathbed, Darwin recanted the theory of evolution and embraced Christ. Why do you think this story became popular? Does this say anything about our society?

Do you believe an atheist could be elected president of the United States?

Should political speeches include the phrase, "God bless America"?

What do you make of the idea that religion gives people "bad reasons to behave well"?

Does atheism provide us with any "good" reasons to behave well?

Do you agree with the central paradox at the core of religion that the three great monotheisms teach people to think abjectly of themselves as miserable and guilty sinners prostrate before an angry and jealous god while also teaching people to be extremely self-centered and conceited by assuring them that god cares for them individually and that the cosmos was created with them specifically in mind?

Does religion poison everything?

Jane8,

Concerning daily values for living, I agree with your views. I wrote about it here:

http://www.realityisfree.com/reality.html


"Pointman";

Speaking of a need to depend on a god for life, let us speak about depending on a god for death....

With one exception, Believers understand what happens to their physical bodies upon their death; it rots away unavoidably into nothingness... ashes to ashes, dust to dust. Believers understand the one exception in the entire history of the world involved a magical mythical person who was resurrected from physical death to continue walking the earth. Believers of everlasting life profess having all the answers about what will happen to their "soul" upon their death, but are short on answers where was their soul before they were born.

What do Believers understand about their souls before they appear here on Earth in a human form? If they were already in heavenly paradise, why return to this world? Does this mean an endless cycle of souls moving back and forth between this world and the heavenly world? What did the souls do before god invented the universe?

Imagine yourself dead. What picture comes to mind? Do you "see" your funeral with a casket surrounded by family and friends? Complete darkness and void? In either case, are you still conscious and observing the scene? In reality, you can no more envision what it is like to be dead than you can visualize yourself before you were born. Death is cognitively nonexistent, and yet we know it is real because every one of the 100 billion people who lived before us is gone.

The attempt to resolve the "imagine you're dead" paradox leads to 4 immortality narratives:

Staying alive: Like all living systems, we strive to avoid death. The human dream of living forever - physically, in this world - is the most basic of immortality narratives. Science is nowhere near reengineering the body to stay alive beyond 120 years. Sooner or later, you'll be dead.

Resurrection: The belief that, although we must physically die, nonetheless we can physically rise again with the bodies we knew in life. Both religious and scientific forms of resurrecting your body succumb to the Transformation Problem (how could you be reassembled just as you were and yet this time be invulnerable to disease and death?) and the Duplication Problem (how would duplicates be different from twins?). The cloning problem will raise yet another paradox (are both clones "me"?) When you are dead, you stay dead... forever.

Soul: The dream of surviving as some kind of spiritual entity. The soul hypothesis has been slain by neuroscience showing that the mind (consciousness, memory and personality patterns representing "you") cannot exist without the brain. When the brain dies of injury, stroke, dementia or Alzheimer's, the mind dies with it. No brain, no mind; no body, no soul. Dead is dead... forever.

Legacy: More indirect ways of extending ourselves into the future such as glory, reputation, historical impact or children. Do you want to achieve immortality through your work or do you want to achieve it by not dying? Staying alive forever is tough work, dying is relatively easy, anybody can do it, and everybody does it. When your gone, you stay gone... forever.

All four fail to deliver everlasting life. Death is permanent.

Could there be a fifth immortality narrative, that of immortality achieved through sexual reproduction? With all its rules governing sex, perhaps organized religion thinks physical immortality via sexual reproduction competes with spiritual immortality, hence the explanation why all the religious concerns with reproductive health?

What do I care what some Bronze Age text says about homosexuality? Homosexuals do not and can not reproduce by mating with same sex partners, homosexuals are born as a consequence of mating between a female and a male. The fifth immortality narrative can not be applied to homosexuals.

Homosexuality is present in all societies, and its incidence would appear to be part of human "design." In the recent division in the Anglican Church over homosexuality and ordination, several bishops made the fatuous point that homosexuality is "unnatural" because it does not occur in other species. Leave aside the fundamental absurdity of this observation: are humans part of "nature" or not? Or, if they chance to be homosexual, are they created in god's image or not? Leave aside the well-attested fact that numberless kinds of birds and mammals and primates do engage in homosexual play. Who are the clerics to interpret nature? They have shown themselves quite unable to do so. We must confront these facts as we find them.

Religion poisons everything.

pointman, You believe that homosexuality is by choice instead of a condition of birth?

Do you also believe that schizophrenia is by choice instead of a condition of birth?

Just curious???

Jane8,

Eph. 6:12 - For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.
The ignorant will not understand this scripture.
Schizophrenia is as much of a demon as someone who kills for pleasure. Someone who abducts children and does all manner of harm to them.
My ancestors walked upright.
The Bible is part of recorded history. Sorry it doesn't cover pre-historic times.

The implication that schizophrenia is anything more than a mental illness >is< one of pure ignorance. (No, I'm not being rude) Mental illness is one of those things that in this day and age people should be far more educated about, but sadly you still have churches preaching its a "demon" or a "curse".

ANYONE that has dealt with a mentally ill person first hand knows better. (yes, I have and do!)

This faulty line of thinking is why proper treatment and understanding with todays technological advances, America is still far in the dark ages.

Ever read the book of Job?

Skipplate:

Glad you are happy and feeling good about life, me too. Only issue we face is eternity. Wish you well.

"The Bible is part of recorded history. Sorry it doesn't cover pre-historic times. "


and you don't find that the least bit perplexing?

Were Adam and Eve caucasian? Since we are talking about actual "history" here.

How interesting it is that for millions of years, god didn't even deserve a mention?

what a load of shinola.

Katybug, We share the earth with some really odd creatures, don't we?

Ephesians 1:19-21 describes the power that was released when Christ was raised from the dead, “...the exceeding greatness of His power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of His might power, Which he wrought in Christ, when He raised him from the dead, and set him at His own right hand in the heavenly places (“epouranios”). Far above, all principality (“arche”), and power (“exousia”), and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come.”


"Pointman";
In the city of Jerusalem, there is a special ward in the mental hospital for those who represent a special danger to themselves and others. These deluded patients are the sufferers from the "Jerusalem syndrome." Police and security officers are trained to recognize them, though their mania is often concealed behind a mask of deceptively beatific calm. They have come to the holy city in order to announce themselves to be the Messiah or to proclaim the end of days.

The connection between religious faith and mental disorder is, from the viewpoint of the tolerant and the "multicultural," both very obvious and highly unmentionable. If someone murders his children and then says that god ordered him to do it, we might find him not guilty by reason of insanity but he would be incarcerated nonetheless. If someone lives in a cave and claims to be seeing visions and experiencing prophetic dreams, we may leave him alone until he turns out to be planning, in a non-phantasmal way, the joy of suicide bombing. If someone announces himself to be god's anointed, and begins stockpiling Kool-Aid and weapons and helping himself to the wives and daughters of his acolytes, we raise a bit more than a skeptical eyebrow.But if these things can be preached under the protection of an established religion, we are expected to take them at face value. Religion poisons everything.

All three monotheisms, just to take the most salient example, praise Abraham for being willing to hear voices and then to take his son
Isaac for a long and rather mad and gloomy walk. And then the caprice by which his murderous hand is finally stayed is written down
as divine mercy. The relationship between physical health and mental health is now well understood to have a strong connection to the sexual function, or dysfunction. Can it be a coincidence, then, that all religions claim the right to legislate in matters of sex?

The principal way in which believers inflict on themselves, on each other, and on nonbelievers, has always been their claim to monopoly in this sphere controlling all aspects of sex. Most religions (with the exception of the few cults that actually permit or encourage it) do not have to bother much with enforcing the taboo on incest. Like murder and theft, this is usually found to be abhorrent to humans without any further explanation. But merely to survey the history of sexual dread and proscription, as codified by religion, is to be met with a very disturbing connection between extreme prurience and extreme repression.

The religious prohibition against homosexuality is not a unique prohibition. Almost every sexual impulse has been made the occasion for prohibition, guilt, and shame. Manual sex, oral sex, anal sex, non-missionary position sex: to name it is to discover a fearsome ban upon it. Even in modern and hedonistic America, several states legally define "sodomy" as that which is not directed at face-to-face heterosexual procreation. This raises gigantic objections to the argument from "design", whether we choose to call that design "intelligent" or not. Clearly, the human species is designed to experiment with sex. No less clearly, this fact is well-known to the priesthoods.

When Dr. Samuel Johnson had completed the first real dictionary of the English language, he was visited by a delegation of respectable old ladies who wished to congratulate him for not including any indecent words. His response -- which was that he was interested to see that the ladies had been looking them up -- contains almost all that needs to be said on this point.

Orthodox Jews may not conduct congress by means of a hole in the sheet, but they do subject their women to ritual baths to cleanse the stain of menstruation. Muslims subject adulterers to public lashings with a whip. Christians used to lick their lips while examining women for signs of witchcraft. I need not go on in this vein: any reader of this comment will know of a vivid example, or will simply guess my meaning. A consistent proof that religion is man-made and anthropomorphic can also be found in the fact that it is usually "man" made, in the sense of masculine, as well. The holy book in the longest continuous use -- the Talmud -- commands the observant one to thank his maker every day that he was not born a woman. (This raises again the insistent question: who but a slave thanks his master for what his master has decided to do without bothering to consult him?)

The Old Testament, as Christians condescendingly call it, has woman cloned from man for his use and comfort. The New Testament has Saint Paul expressing both fear and contempt for the female. Throughout all religious texts, there is a primitive fear that half the human race is simultaneously defiled and unclean, and yet is also a temptation to sin that is impossible to resist. Perhaps this explains the hysterical cult of virginity and of a Virgin, and the dread of the female form and of female reproductive functions? Perhaps this explains the religious rights fascination with the murdering of abortionists? And there may be someone who can explain the sexual and other cruelties of the religious without any reference to the obsession with celibacy, but that someone will not be me.

I simply laugh when I read the Koran, with its endless prohibitions on sex and its corrupt promise of infinite debauchery in the life to come: it is like seeing through the "let's pretend" of a child, but without the indulgence that comes from watching the innocent at play. The homicidal lunatics -- rehearsing to be genocidal lunatics -- of 911 were perhaps tempted by the promise of virgins waiting their arrival, but it is far more revolting to contemplate that, like so many of their fellow jihadists, they were virgins. Like monks of old, the fanatics are taken early from their families, taught to despise their mothers and sisters, and come to adulthood without ever having had a normal conversation, let alone a normal relationship, with a woman. This is disease by definition.

Christianity is too repressed to offer after-death sex in paradise -- indeed it has never been able to evolve a tempting heaven at all -- but it has been lavish in its promise of sadistic and everlasting punishment for sexual backsliders, and homosexuals in particular, which is nearly as revealing in making the same point in a different way.

Nothing optional -- from homosexuality to adultery -- is ever made punishable unless those who do the prohibiting (and exact the fierce punishments) have a repressed desire to participate. As Shakespeare put it in King Lear, the policeman who lashes the whore has a hot need to use her for the very offense for which he plies the lash. I wonder if in his day Shakespeare knew of pedophilic homosexual priests, too?

Religion poisons everything.

For the many Thanks author,

This is by far the best essay I have ever seen on this subject. If you wrote it, you must have a link somewhere. Can you provide it?

Are you, perhaps, a reincarnation of Colonel Gordon who told the truth for so many years in Letters to the Editor?

@ thank God re November 20, 2012 8:37 AM post:
When you copy large portions of a book you should put those passages in quotes and give the source so it is clear it is not your original work. In this case your excerpts came from "God Is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything" By Christopher Hitchens. Using a personal slogan (religion poisons everything) doesn't do it. Some people might even accuse you of plagiarism.

Regarding your list of questions to Pointman - they are all in the same genre as "Have you quit beating your wife?" Why don't you answer them and let him comment on your answers.

gosh, why would people copy huge portions of a book and post the boring sh@t on here. If I'm going to read a dang novel, is sure as heck am not going read it on a blog/comment or whateter you call it on here.

Write you're on cr@p on here.

Writing standards for published letters used to be more exact -- importantly reflecting more considered thought --than what is normally found with online commentary.

Gene again proves himself the exception to the rule:

Still wondering what "almost universally rejected by a majority of Americans" means.

That nonsense passage aptly represents the entire offering.

Oh, well. A rebuttal is on the way...

True to form, the evangelical fundamentalists and Catholics do not advance counter-arguments supporting the denial of basic human rights to homosexuals. Instead, they attack any messenger who supports basic human rights for all of humanity, but especially ANY support for homosexual rights. The attack is particularly loathsome for following in the same argumentative footsteps used against granting civil rights for blacks and minorities. I am not persuaded to consider any religious argument that fails the test of the Golden Rule.

valley patriot, you have no quarrel about the content, substance, or opinions of the comments posted by TGFMMAA? You are in full agreement? Or is your quarrel not with the message, but with the messenger, or the source?

valley patriot, I seem to recall you recently posed a long list of questions to Katybug for discussion. How is what you did different than the questions posed by TGFMMAA? I see no distinction, so I must ask you, valley patriot, when did you stop beating your wife?

@ caca re November 22, 2012 1:41 PM post:

I do not practice any organized religion, but I find it hypocritical that your application of the Golden Rule apparently does not extend to evangelical fundamentalists or Catholics. Try to avoid bigotry. Also, I am curious as to which “basic human rights” are being denied homosexuals. If you are referring to marriage, according to wiki, “…the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act explicitly defines marriage for the purposes of federal law as between a man and a woman and allows states to ignore same-sex marriages from other states (though states arguably could do this already). Forty-one US states currently define marriage as between a man and a woman.” So, on this issue, most U.S. voters do not think anyone is being denied anything.

I have no quarrel with the right of the author of the book that Thank God copied to express the content, substance, or opinion therein. I simply disagree. I do have a quarrel with the way Thank God presented the material as his own.

The difference, caca, between the source of my questions and Thank God’s source is mine came from the public domain and his came from copyrighted material. Try to catch up.







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